Scottish Cup replays 'could be scrapped to accommodate Euro 2020'

Scottish Cup replays could be scrapped next season in order to accommodate the Euro 2020 fixtures scheduled for Hampden next summer, Scottish FA chief executive Ian Maxwell has suggested.

Hibs faced two cup replays during their successful run in 2016
Hibs faced two cup replays during their successful run in 2016

Three group stage matches and one knock-out tie are fixed for the national stadium between June 15 and 30, and the Scottish Cup final has been brought forward to May 9 to give UEFA ample time to modify the arena to their needs.

And the SFA is looking into the possibility of deciding all Scottish Cup ties at the first time of asking, in a bid to avoid fixture congestion.

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Maxwelll told The Times: "We want to have a Scottish Cup review - there’s a few things we want to look at and replays is one of them.

"I was at the Highland League meeting last year and they wanted to go to penalties after 90 minutes rather than having extra time and replays.

“I know from my playing days that keeping potential replay dates free is frustrating when you could be playing league fixtures.

"Scheduling is difficult with the winter break and it’s something we will look at, because I’m sure the clubs will have a few [ideas].

"It’s also about supporters and we can ask them their view through the congress.”

Maxwell also confirmed that a deal for the SFA to buy Hampden from Queen's Park was "very, very close".

He added: "It’s a complicated transaction. Buying anything isn’t straightforward when there are lawyers involved; there is always a lot to it.

“But, hopefully, we can make an announcement within the next couple of weeks. It’s taking a bit longer than we would have liked for a variety of different reasons, but it’s all on track.”